Start Right: Maintaining Your Log or Wood Home
Keep in mind that, just like conventional stick-built homes have to be scraped down and re-painted, your wood home, deck or fence will need to be re-stained over time. And just like paint on stick-built homes, regular maintenance will prolong the life of your stain, saving you time and money down the line.
Checks & Cracks Maintenance
As your home loses moisture, new checks and cracks may appear. There will be more of this in the first few years of a new home, less as the home ages and comes to its moisture equilibrium in its environment. Be sure to fill anything ¼” wide or larger with a high-quality elastic caulk made specifically for log and wood homes. In addition, it’s possible for cracks and checks that were previously caulked to open further. Inspect all of them and be sure to re-apply caulking to those checks and cracks as necessary.
Is it time for aThermography Survey?
If you’re feeling drafts or seeing moisture coming into your home but haven’t been able to pinpoint the entry location, bring in a professional who will be able to perform a thermographic survey. These surveys help pinpoint where the air and moisture are getting in so you can get them properly sealed. A survey like this can help save you money on those heating and air conditioning bills. Contact Sashco for names of contractors who perform this work.
Most older wood homes can be salvaged – that is the beauty of wood as a building material. Just a few cells down, underneath the grayed, deteriorated surface is (usually) good, sound wood waiting to be restored to its prior beauty. Restoring an older neglected wood or log home may be costly, but it can be brought back to life. Our goal is to ensure you start right so your home looks great and lasts forever.
Maintaining the Dream
Regular maintenance is the often-forgotten ongoing step in wood home finishing; however, it is one of the most important steps that results in cost savings (and fewer headaches) through the years.
Preventative maintenance saves time and money, so it is good practice to inspect your home each spring and fall. This involves walking around your home and paying close attention to the stain’s appearance. Take these tools with you when you do your maintenance checks:
- A rough sketch of the home – write notes next to each wall detailing needed maintenance
- A camera – take pictures of areas that need maintenance
- Blue painters tape – mark areas that need maintenance to find them easily later on
What to Look For
Download Sashco’s handy Log Home Inspection Guide from our website. This pamphlet lists a number of issues to watch for. Note any problems on the sketch or checklist, then decide what kind of maintenance is needed. You can handle most maintenance issues. If you’re not the DIY type, or click here for names of contractors who specialize in log and wood home care who can do the work for you.
The sun-exposed sides of your home – usually south and west walls – will require more frequent maintenance than other parts of the home. The majority of work, especially caulking and staining, should be done when wood is very dry and checks are very large. This allows the stain to effectively seep into the openings, and then the caulk to be applied at the check’s widest point, helping maintain a tight seal and providing for the maximum protection and least amount of follow up maintenance.
Any time your stain needs to be maintained, be sure to clean the surfaces first. Surface preparation is important before staining, as well as when maintaining it. Most manufacturers will include stain maintenance recommendations in their literature. Follow their recommendations and contact them if you have any questions.
In most cases, stain that is still in fairly good shape (meaning little peeling, flaking, or fading, etc.) can simply be spot prepped and re-applied. With several products, all that’s required is a re-application of a top coat.